Knowing how to budget your money is one of the most important things to do when you have a low income. It can be overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be if you break it down into manageable chunks.
In our profession, unfortunately, the average pay for administrative support professionals is an average of between $35,000 – $50,000, depending on your specialization. One way to make your budget more manageable is by making sure that you are spending less than you earn. Doing this will give you a safety net in case something unexpected happens and your income changes.
Make sure that all of your bills are paid on time and in full every month. This will help your credit score and avoid any late fees or interest charges.
It’s important to find ways to save money in order to make a budget work for you. This article will help you create a budget for your low-income lifestyle and explore ways you can cut back on expenses.
To make it easier for you, I’m going to give you my budget planner that I have been using for years, so I know it works! All you have to do is sign up for my email list!
**Once you confirm your email address, you will be provided a link to the document.**
Create Your Budget
A budget is a plan to allocate your money. It is a way of ensuring that you have enough money for the things that are important to you.
It shows the long-term goals and short-term goals so you can see how much money you have coming in and how much money is going out.
Your budget will also show you the current balance of your account, as well as the total balance at the end of each pay period.
A budget can help you decide how much money to spend on different things, such as food and entertainment. A budget can also help you save for the future and make sure that you meet your financial goals.
Let’s jump right in and show you how to budget your money.
How to Budget Your Money
- Enter all of your pay dates into the columns. The budget I provided you with is a Bi-monthly pay set up. Adjust as needed.
- In rows 3-6, add your current the balance prior to being paid and all the income for this pay period. The sheet will automatically sum your totals. If you only have one stream of income, feel free to delete the extra lines. Keeping them there wouldn’t hurt your sheets though, it’s up to you.
- I started you off with an estimate of an $30k a year bi-monthly net income amount to help guide you.
- You can use the extra income rows if you are creating this for you and your partner, and you share a bank account.
- In rows 11-29, write the name of every bill you have to pay throughout the year. If you need to add more rows, right click on the “29” on Row 29 and select “Insert 1 row below.” Do that as many times as you need. Don’t start adding in amounts yet. Just focus on thinking of all the bills you have to pay.
- Now you want to fill in the amounts for each bill, being mindful to take into consideration the frequency. For small regular monthly bills, you can probably pay that in full once every month. However, other bills don’t require a bit of juggling, depending on your preference.
- For larger monthly bills like your rent, consider breaking up the full amount into two chunks, which would help free up more cash to throughout the month.
- For larger bills due every 6 months or every year, for example, car insurance, break the full amount into much smaller chunks that you set aside specifically for that expense. So if your car insurance was $500 every 6 months, and you were paid bi-monthly, every paycheck you’d need to set aside $41.67 (round to $42) every pay period.
Maintaining a budget is all about being learning how and when to be flexible with yourself and your needs. If you look at the budget gave you, I show you how, with $30,000 a year after taxes, to pay for:
- $800 in rent,
- $100 on utilities,
- $70 cable,
- $60 internet,
- $300 groceries, and
- save $100 a month.
All you have to do is to fill this in honestly, and remember, don’t be afraid to split up expenses.
At the bottom of the sheet, you can do fun things like set aside money for Amazon and buying lunch at work once a week or so.
Pro tip: Take advantage of Amazon’s gift card feature to help prevent you from overspending. Reload your gift card with your budgeted amount and do not buy more than your gift card balance.
If you don’t use it during that pay period, your total gift card amount will keep growing. 🙂 Amazon was a huge problem area for me, and this definitely helped me.
TL;DR (Too Long; Didn’t Read)
Download my free budget planner to help you budget your money with low income by signing up for my newsletter email list.
Follow the steps to add your income and expenses and find the ease and clarity of having a reliable budget.
Creating and maintaining a budget doesn’t have to be a pain in the butt. Once you have everything set up, you just do what the sheet says. You’ll have peace of mind that you won’t have any financial surprises, and you’ve prepared yourself in case of emergencies.
I added an area that adds totals to each expense line, so you know how much you will have saved by the end of the year if you stick to the budget.